Fostering a hygienic culture in your labspace

March 16, 2023 | Lab Furniture

When it comes to particle count, many laboratories aren’t ISO 14644 registered. Poorly planned and managed labs can unintentionally result in unseen hazards, from areas that are hard to access for cleaning to dirt traps which provide homes for bacteria to thrive and grow.

Sue Springett, commercial manager of Teknomek, discussed how you get to clean your labspace in three straightforward and cost-effective ways:

Improving laboratory layout

Any change you introduce to your lab, such as a new equipment, affords you an opportunity to review and reassess. Questions you should frequently ask yourself as a lab manager include:

  • What is the laboratory’s purpose? Has it changed over time?

  • What equipment is used? How frequently is it being used?

  • How many people are working in the lab space? What is the current or likely flow between each of the workstations?

  • Are there any health and safety issues with regards to using a specific equipment?

After considering all these questions, you can flag down issues and plan to avoid unnecessary risks of contamination. You can also consult with your cleaning team to further identify problem areas and make sure to incorporate appropriate changes within your lab design. 

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More than just good ventilation

Having an effective ventilation system (HVAC) in your lab can also reduce contamination risks. But aside from reducing particles in your space, you need to consider other factors. During the design stage, the placement of vents in relation to usage and furniture is important to ensure that airflow isn’t hindered. Moreover, knowing where your lab team will be working most of the time could also help in maintaining hygiene of your lab as this addresses potential problems of air blockages. 

Lab furniture that support a hygienic environment

Your lab furniture can have concealed ledges, ridges and inaccessible corners that can be potential dangerous harbourage points for organisms. Opting for storage furniture that are covered with sloping ledges or choosing mobile furniture are helpful. If you have large pieces of equipment, have a removable case around to make cleaning easier.

Paramount to the operation and productivity of your lab is keeping it a clean and safe environment for your lab staff to work in. 

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